By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger can't wait to see Cesc Fabregas back in action - but he believes that Arsenal have learned how to play without their captain.

The Spanish star should make a welcome return after the forthcoming international break, a little over three months after suffering knee ligament damage against Liverpool.

It was an injury which threatened to derail Arsenal's season; after all, the 21-year-old is the fulcrum of the side and dictates so much of their play. Wenger knows that Fabregas provides a well-trodden path to goal but, in his absence, the Frenchman's team have found alternative routes to the back of the net.

"We have had to," Wenger told Arsenal TV Online.

"I believe we will all be happy when Cesc comes back but we had to cope without him and of course, I believe it will be a big lift for everybody when he’s back. But we had to do without him.

"When he’s there, everything goes through him but when he’s not it can take a while to adapt because the game goes through different ways – it’s plural.

"When it’s Fabregas it is more one-way traffic at the start of the build-up."

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17 Mar 2009